Spanish Fort, AL Real Estate News

By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
November 2008 home sale statistics for Spanish Fort, Daphne and Fairhope, Alabama Home sales in November, 2008, dropped to 47 houses sold in Spanish Fort, Daphne, Fairhope and Point Clear. This follows the home sales peak of 135 sales in July, then a decline to 84 in August, 71 in September, and 53 in October. Pending sales have risen slightly to 98 homes under contract, compared with only 87 under contract in October. Inventory continues to decrease slightly to 1,157 homes for sale on the Eastern Shore as of Dec. 3. As we all know, there are few bright spots in the economy these days. A big however is that mortgage interest rates have fallen, hovering around 5.25 percent. Let's hope that word spreads.   Here are the stats for the Eastern Shore in November: Total houses for sale: 1,157 ...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
The last time the Eastern Shore home sales market was this slow was October, 2001, the month after 9/11 attacks on the United States. Home sales in October 2008 dropped again to only 53 homes sold in Spanish Fort, Daphne, Fairhope and Point Clear. This follows the home sales peak of 135 sales in July, then a decline to 84 in August and 71 in September. Pending sales have also fallen to just 87 homes under contract to sell. While disappointing, this is not surprising as that nation was spellbound by the erratic spiral downward of the stock market, coupled with the last month of presidential politicking. Inventory continues to slide slightly from a peak around 1,300 this summer to 1,183 for sale on Nov. 6. Today, interest rates are reacting to market news and are entrenched above 6% local...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
Ever-increasing homeowner insurance rates are not only affecting family budgets, but also home sales.    For example, an older home north of Interstate 10 in Spanish Fort - elevation 150 feet above sea level - would appear to be a likely candidate for lower rates. Not so, prospective buyers are finding. In fact, they may be shocked to find that they need to be insured through the Alabama Insurance Underwriting Association (AIUA), also known as the "beach pool."    The root cause is that insurers are trying to reduce their liability along the entire Gulf Coast. To do that, they have constructed parameters on what they will insure and where.    Three Eastern Shore insurance agents whom I contacted agreed to tackle a couple of questions to try to explain: They are: Lad Drago Jr. of State F...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
What's happening in the big wide world of real estate and finance these days?   The answer is way above my pay grade.   Locally, I can tell you it's a good time to buy. Lenders have money,  the interest rate is very good and there are plenty of houses for sale.   If I could figure out anything more for our future, George Bush would be painting my toenails while Larry King interviews me in my living room.   Here's what did happen in the last quarter before the collective Freak Out over The Bailout, The Market and The Election.   Price corrections in the Eastern Shore housing market produced mixed news in the 3rd quarter: The number of homes sold rose over the previous quarter, but sellers took on average 5% off their list prices to make the deals happen.   Buyers gravitated to foreclosur...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
  Home sales were up slightly to 135 solds in July, compared with 128 homes sold in June 2008 from Spanish Fort to Point Clear. The number of houses going under contract remains weak at 119 pendings, up slightly from 114 pendings in June. July statistics aren't much different from those of a year ago, when the slowdown in home sales started. Typically, July is a slow real estate month with the majority of families with school-aged children trying to close in May/June. Inventory continues to rise, from 1,237 on the market in June to 1,284 now on the market. Here are the stats for the Eastern Shore in July: Total houses for sale: 1,284 Spanish Fort: 135 Daphne: 458 Fairhope: 629 Lake Forest: 62 Pending sales Total: 119 Spanish Fort: 16 Daphne: 47 Fairhope: 49 Lake Forest: 7     Closed sal...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
Putting foreclosures into perspective, plus 2nd quarter sales on the Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay   The latest epidemic, the latest outbreak, is not on our tomatoes. It's on our foreclosure-fevered brains.   The symptoms: ■ Worry that the foreclosed house in your neighborhood is going to bring down property values. ■ Worry that the foreclosured house down the street will sell before your house sells. ■ Worry that your offer on that "deal-of-the-century" foreclosure won't be accepted. ■ Worry that you will have to flee in the dead of night to avoid the neighbors as your house is foreclosed on.   Really, the only one in trouble is the person with the last symptom.   Most appraisers and Realtors differentiate between a foreclosure and a normal sale when valuing property, so unless your stre...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
What a strange trip this has been. All of us piled up in this stationwagon taking in the sights at CNN and the morning news.   Oh look, it's an up day on Wall Street. Uh oh, it's down again.  There, over on the left  ... it's another report of unemployment rising.  Stop, put the brakes on. The Fed has spoken and bailed out Bear Stearns!  Everyone in the car keeps asking if we're there yet. Is this bottom?  It's times like these that make me wish I could present these figures in a grid format and let you take from them what you will.   But why break with tradition? So here's my view of what's happening in this real estate market.  ■ Sales in the first quarter of 2008 are down 33% compared to the first quarter of 2007. Last year, I could point to some 180 houses under contract as a hopefu...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
Home for sale at 31020 Woodland Way, Spanish Fort, AL 36527 To see this home contact Janet English, Realtor, Re/Max By The Bay, 251.591.2411 Janet English | RE/Max By The Bay | 251 591-2411 31020 Woodland Way, Spanish Fort, AL Handsome 4 bedroom, plus study for sale at 31020 Woodland Way, Spanish Fort, AL 36527 4 Bdrm Single Family House offered at $273,000 Year Built 1998 Sq Footage 2,576 Bedrooms 4 Bathrooms 2 full, 0 partial Floors 2 Parking 2 Car garage Lot Size Unspecified HOA/Maint $0 per month DESCRIPTION Owners transferred and regret leaving this immaculately kept 4/2 plus study. Inside you'll find a grand kitchen with granite countertops, large eat-in area, cooktop, island and ample storage. There brand new, neutral Stainmaster carpet and paint throughout. The central greatroom...
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TOP 10 REASONS TO MOVE TO SOUTHERN ALABAMA (FAIRHOPE, DAPHNE, SPANISH FORT, MOBILE, FOLEY, GULF SHORES, SARALAND and OTHER MOBILE & BALDWIN COUNTY AREAS)                   1) ATMOSPHERE As a client once said, "even though the cars are fancy, the people aren't" and "we love being able to enjoy the beauty of the beach and the friendly downtown businesses all in the same walk".    2) CLIMATE Due to the proximity to the water, the climate is moderate.  Our falls are mild and winters are short.   3) SPECTACULAR HOMES & PRICES Our prices are usually less than homes out west or up north.  With a variety of styles and custom home builders, Alabama offers affordable, quality homes.  Alabama property taxes are often times cheaper than other states.   4) RECREATION Sailing, canoing, fishing, kayak...
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By Heather Augustin
(Coldwell Banker Reehl Properties)
WHY MOVE TO SPANISH FORT, ALABAMA?                   1) SPANISH FORT DEMOGRAPHICS The median age for residents in Spanish Fort, AL, is 41.1 and families represent 74.6% of the population.  Median household incomes for Spanish Fort, Alabama was $69,467, according to the 2000 United States Census data.    2)  SCHOOLS Rockwell elementary school had 662 students, with 42 teachers on staff during the 2004-2005 school year, giving a student-teacher ratio of 15.5.  Spanish Fort school had 696 students with 44 teachers on staff during the 2004-2005 school year, giving a student-teacher ratio of 15.7.  Spanish Fort High school had 711 students with 48 teachers on staff during the 2004-2005 school year, giving a student-teacher ratio of 14.8.  Click here for more information on the Baldwin County...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
 From Janet English, RE/Max By the Bay, Daphne, Alabama
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By Heather Augustin
(Coldwell Banker Reehl Properties)
After a tough few months wondering what the market was going to do, I was blessed with a sale and have realized how sought after Spanish Fort Alabama real estate is.  And why not? It's a perfect location.  Just between Mobile, Alabama  and Pensacola, Florida- so a quick commute to either area.  Our taxes are less than Florida's, so why not live in paradise while paying less?If you are looking for affordable prices and great investment opportunity, check out Spanish Fort Alabama, located in Baldwin County, Alabama.  Baldwin county is the largest and second fastest growing county in the state of Alabama.  Forbes magazine rated the area as one of the top 50 small metro areas to start and grow a business.   SOLD!FOR MORE INFORMATION ON SPANISH FORT ALABAMA REAL ESTATE, CONTACT HEATHER AUGUS...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
This is a tough market update to write. What to say? What to say? Too much information to digest and impart.  Maybe that's the problem ... there's simply too much information about the national housing market, the global financial market, the subprime, the Fed, the fraud, the foreclosures, to clearly see what's happening. And it's not just me. This information binge clearly is spinning the heads of would-be buyers and sellers.  It's strange because the bad news is offset by the good. For all the declines in the number of homes sold, there is not yet an overall decline in average sales price on the Eastern Shore. For all the lower offers that buyers are making, there are still sellers who have realized great appreciation if they've owned their home for at least three years. For every Rea...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
Should I buy a house now?Here we are, me and my clients, looking at a brand new listing with a pool that's priced as if it was 2005, not 2007, when the question comes up again: "Should I buy a house now?"Normally, client and Realtor don't discuss things so elementary. After all, we are LOOKING AT HOUSES. So I guess as a Realtor I should say, emphatically YES! But this is a former client who moved away in 2006 and moved back in 2007, in which case the question and his trust in me make perfect sense.In fact, it's the question on most buyers' minds.The answer is, to paraphrase Dave Liniger, co-founder and chairman of the board of RE/Max International: It depends. It's a question Liniger said his own sons have asked. If you are looking to buy and plan to stay in the home a while, if you hav...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
Frequently someone asks: "Where is all the money coming from to buy these high-priced houses? You can't tell me we've got a bunch of people making $300,000 a year."   No, I don't know what these people earn.  But I can tell you where the money is coming from, what the risks are and why change is an inevitable but frequently ignored factor in home buying.  High-end home buyers generally have several sources of money, if they are not making a gazillion dollars to start with.  Inheritance: These buyers often don't come from what we'd think of as moneyed families. They simply have inherited a family property that was paid for - maybe their parents' modest $100,000 ranch-style home -- and they use the proceeds to purchase their next home.  Savvy home investors: These are the folks who regard...
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
I bet you want to know if the sky is really falling. It sure seems like it if you watch the national news.  You have your subprime mortgage meltdown. Your housing market meltdown. Your global market meltdown.  So what's it like on the Eastern Shore?  The number of homes sold since the first of 2007 is down 10% compared with the first nine months of 2006. And the first nine months of 2006 were down 20% over the same period in 2005. (But don't forget that ‘05 and ‘06 were energetic years for our Eastern Shore market as hurricane-wary buyers looked to inland areas of the coast.)  Average sales price crept up 2% during the first nine months of this year to $292,932. In the third quarter, it was up about 1.5% to $292,433, compared to the third quarter of 2006.  The number of homes sold betwe...
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By Christian Augustin
(New Haven Homes, LLC)
EXQUISITE NEW CONSTRUCTION BY NEW HAVEN HOMES. FRENCH COUNTRY STYLE WITH 3 CAR GARAGE. CALL NOW TO BE INCLUDED ON THE SELECTION OF CUSTOM CABINETS, COLORS, CARPET, ETC. 4TH BR CAN BE OFFICE/STUDY.FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT WWW.NEWHAVENHOMESLLC.COM 
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By Janet English, Market expert in Daphne, Spanish Fort, Fairhope
(RE/MAX By The Bay, Daphne Alabama)
Tip O'Neill once said: All politics is local.  Such is true right now with real estate. National coverage of the housing market's ups and downs paints a broad picture.  But real estate issues that may affect you are local.  "How's business," I've been asked repeatedly. And before I can get the answer out, the questioner volunteers, "Slow, huh?"  Actually, I'm slammed.  So let's get to what's going on in the local market.►Inventory is at an all-time high between Spanish Fort and Point Clear. More than 1,000 homes on the market is cause for concern, but it's also the product of this area's growth. Right now, the inventory has helped to increase the time needed to sell a home.►The days of speculative pricing are all but over. Offers presented by buyers' agents are relying on comparable sol...
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By Tom Sinclair
(About the House - Home Inspections)
Sometimes, as in real life, a loose screw can really be a problem. Like the third screw in the picture above, a loose screw can really foul things up. In life, a loose screw can lead a disturbed student to take lives. In houses, it can lead to a roof leak. I'll take the roof leak anyday!And like the roof leak above, a loose screw can turn one's insides black and very unhealthly.Do something nice for a stranger today. Help them keep their screw tight! Tom SinclairAbout the House - Home InspectionsFairhope, Alabama(251) 990-3169www.InspectTestAnalyze.com 
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